The Dangers of Forced Parenting on your Mental Health
The biggest GIFT you can give your Child is the knowledge and security
to know that they were wanted and loved from the START~mari corona
It has been a very emotional week for me with all the current events on the news. It’s a very delicate subject to talk about Life and Children in the privacy of your home and/or with your family. It is another when total strangers, MEN, and the law makers want to get involved. Why do you want to have a say in my family planning? Why are you so adamant that what you are proposing is the RIGHT way to go and the BEST thing for me?
Do you know me, do you know my circumstances, do you care about my well being? NO, no, and no are the answers to my questions and because I know that that is the answer I am strongly for PRO-CHOICE.
Everyone deserves the right to choose what is best for their life and their circumstances. Every women should have the right to choose if she wants to be a MOTHER. Everyone women should have the right to do with her BODY as she pleases. All choices have consequences I should have the right to have to deal with those consequences. And what good has ever really come from forced situations?
I am proud to share my journey into motherhood all the time. My daughter is a reflection of all the choices prior to her being conceived and the nine months I carried here. My daughter was a conscious choice one made out of love, anticipation, hopes, and desires. My daughter was planned for and wanted before she ever existed. Again, a Choice I was able to make for myself, my family, and my body. My daughter has never felt unloved, or a burden, or a mistake. My daughter has never heard her parents refer to her as a thing that happened to them that ruined their lives. My daughter has never been looked upon as an obstacle to have to deal with for an x amount of years.
The joy and love my daughter has bought my life for the past twenty-four years I can only pray and wish for every parent in the world. My heart spills over constantly with pride for she is an amazing human being full of life. Watching her grow all these years, first steps, first words, FIRSTS FIRSTS FIRSTS…I was present in every way at every turning point because I made a choice to be a mother. Growing pains and Teenage “rebellion” didn’t cause my mental health to spiral out of control with stress because I made a choice. Scrapped knees, first loves, school activities, setting house rules, saying no, entering High School, paying for College…were all chapters taken in stride because I made a Choice.
The Dangers of Forced Parenting on your Mental Health don’t just go away. It is something the mother transfers onto her unborn child from day one whether knowingly or not. It is something I have witnessed myself for over thirty years and it is something that I myself had to work through and peel way the layers of my own journey into existence after reading Resmaa Menakem’s book My Grandmother’s hands. This book dives in to the Traumas different bodies carry and spill onto other bodies, white, black, brown, etc…
One of the exercises after a particular chapter was to take a few minutes to envision your mother and what was going on in her life while she was pregnant with you. So to be clear I had NEVER really stopped to think of all that entailed. I know my history, I know what was going on generally but I NEVER peeled away the layers. I never attached the possibility of trauma to that time in my mother’s life. So I lit some incense, closed my eyes, took a few deep breathes, and began to picture my twenty year old mother pregnant with me. I cried for ten minutes.
My mother was nineteen when she arrived in this country, brought here by her older sister along with her mother (my baby #2) and her other three siblings. She didn’t speak the language and began to work in the factories in Brooklyn, New York. Met my father, who was ten years older than her at some point and had me a year later. Now, what is traumatic about that you might ask? Well how about the fact that just maybe just maybe she had nothing to call her own. She was living with her mother and now had to find a place of her own? She barely knew the language and now had to deal with doctors and extra bills? She maybe wasn’t really into my father like that either to start a family with this man. Maybe she felt trapped because she didn’t know she had OTHER options.
How can she be happy to be pregnant? How can she be blissful with anticipation for the next nine months with such uncertainty? Was anyone supportive of her situation, was my father around, was she happy to see the changes her body was going through? Was this the product of her first sexual encounter? Was my grandmother constantly speaking to her in a judgmental manner as I had witnessed myself so many times in my own life? Did she cry often, when she was scared did she have a friend to lean on?
What I knew for sure after those ten minutes of crying and thinking about her experience was that I was so grateful that I had not repeated that cycle. I had a better and deeper understanding of the chaos an unplanned pregnancy brought into her life. I had even more empathy for the quick thinking on her feet she had to do constantly during the years she raised me as a single mother before she got married when I was ten years old. My own existence was proof of the Dangers of Forced Parenting on your Mental Health. My mother did the best she could with what she had but she had NO CHOICE.
Now let’s add to this physical and emotional traumas such as Sexual Assault, Rape, or Incest. How do you LOVE a product of ABUSE on your body, mind and spirit? How do force someone to ACCEPT this as normal and their REALITY? Why is evoking RELIGION and or “the BIBLE” an accepted form of LAW or RULE? Why are some people’s beliefs more valid than others? AND will you apply the same rules to YOUR family if such tragic events take place on one of them?
I am NOT here to tell you which life matters. I am not here to tell you when life starts. I am here to tell you that bringing another HUMAN BEING into this world by FORCE is not the answer. I am here to share a different perspective. I am here as proof of choices.
Because my mother was forced into motherhood, she had to cut her dreams short, she had to make many sacrifices I heard about daily throughout my childhood, I was loved but loved out of responsibility not desire. I was cared for with the basics but not the deep. I came with an expiration date not a life time commitment. Because she was forced into motherhood, her Mental Health suffered she dealt with anxiety and depression her whole life, she used Alcohol as a means to calm herself down and escape life’s stresses. She was a functioning Alcoholic but no child should have to deal with any parents addictions.
No one ASKS to be born…we are products of CHOICES. The HUMAN thing to do is to give WOMEN the right to choose over their own bodies. When you have a choice you have better quality when you have better quality you have a BETTER LIFE.
Start talking….let me know your thoughts your own experience. Do you know how you came about, were you a MISTAKE or a BLESSING? Do you agree or disagree on the CHOICE OF MOTHERHOOD? What is your perspective?
Always stress-free xo,